Notes: Aceves, Reyes take care of visa issues

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Notes: Aceves, Reyes take care of visa issues

By SeanMcAdam
CSNNE.com

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Pitchers Alfredo Aceves and Dennys Reyes took care of their visa issues at the Mexican consulate in Hermasillo Wednesday and are expected back in camp Friday.

"Everything went well,'' said Francona. "It went like we hoped it would and they'll be on the field (Friday).''

Aceves had been in camp and had thrown two side sessions before departing. Reyes had been delayed in arriving and has yet to be in camp.

"We haven't seen him,'' said Francona. "Hopefully, he's been throwing a lot. Not being in camp is certainly not an advantage. We'll have to gauge where he is and how quickly he can get into it. We'll have a little better feel as we see him throwing the next couple of days.''

The Sox will pack up their belongings at the Player Development Complex Friday afternoon and shift operations for the start of the final season at City of Palms Parks, where they play exhibition games, starting Saturday.

Two pitchers dealing with arm issues will be left behind when the team departs: Junichi Tazawa, who underwent Tommy John surgery last spring and had his first full bullpen session earlier in the week and Brandon Duckworth, whose right shoulder revealed some weakness during testing earlier in camp.

Both will continue on prescribed throwing programs.

After a day off from swinging Wednesday, Adrian Gonzalez hit off a tee Thursday, taking 36 swings. He'll repeat the same workload Friday.

"He's building up volume as he goes,'' Francona said. "He tolerated everything real well.''

Outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury was excused from camp with a bug which has
been going through the clubhouse. He's expected to return Friday...Francona
will be absent from camp Friday after the passing of his grandmother. Bench
coach DeMarlo Hale will run camp Friday morning, which will be cut short
to accommodate a scheduled charity golf tournament Friday afternoon.

Sean McAdam can be reached at smcadam@comcastsportsnet.com.Follow Sean on Twitter at http:twitter.comsean_mcadam

Red Sox secure playoff with 6-4 win over Rays

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Red Sox secure playoff with 6-4 win over Rays

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - Dustin Pedroia hit his fourth career grand slam to help Rick Porcello get his major league-leading 22nd win, and the Boston Red Sox clinched a playoff berth by beating the Tampa Bay Rays 6-4 Saturday night for their 10th consecutive win.

Boston maintained a 5 1/2-game lead over Toronto for the division title and ensured no worse than the AL's second wild card. While the Red Sox technically have a magic number of one, the Blue Jays and Baltimore Orioles play each other three times in the season's final week - meaning only one of them can win match Boston's 91 wins.

Among the other wild-card contenders, only Detroit can reach 91 victories.

Pedroia stopped an 0-for-17 skid with a single in the sixth and gave Boston a 6-3 lead with a seventh-inning drive off Danny Farquhar.

Porcello (22-4) gave up three runs, eight hits and struck out nine over 6 1/3 innings. He just missed getting his 12th consecutive start of seven or more innings and three runs or fewer, which would have moved him past Cy Young (1904) and Pedro Martinez (2000) for the longest stretch during the same season in franchise history.

Craig Kimbrel, the fifth Boston reliever, reached 30 saves for the sixth straight season despite allowing Logan Forsythe's solo homer in the ninth.

Brad Miller hit a two-run double in a three-run second that put Tampa Bay up 3-1 and gave him 80 RBIs.

Tampa Bay threatened in the second but failed to score due to two nice defensive plays. Pedroia made a throw from just in front of the outfield grass at second base on Mikie Mahtook's grounder to get Corey Dickerson at the plate. Third baseman Brock Holt made a solid play along the line on Alexei Ramirez's grounder and threw him out at first to end the inning.

Farrell: Sandoval could possibly return to Red Sox for postseason

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Farrell: Sandoval could possibly return to Red Sox for postseason

Thought to be lost for the season after shoulder surgery this past spring, Pablo Sandoval could possibly return to the Red Sox for the postseason, Red Sox manager John Farrell told reporters Saturday.

Sandoval joined the team in St. Petersburg, where the Red Sox are playing the Tampa Bay Rays. Farrell said Sandoval had played in instructional league games in Florida and was "well ahead of schedule."

He could be an option to be activated if another player is injured. 

“One of the things I put in my mind that I have to work,” Sandoval told Boston Herald. “I learned a lot of things about this surgery so I had to work hard to be on the field as soon as possible.

“There are a lot of things I’ve been doing, working out, doing things so I can get better and better everyday.”

Sandoval, 30, is in the second year of a five-year, $95 contract. He lost his starting third base job to Travis Shaw in spring training and in April an MRI revealed he needed surgery on his left (non-throwing) shoulder, which was to have ended his season.

He appeared in only three games this season and hit .245 with 10 homers and 47 RBI in 126 games in 2015.